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Catching "Matty"


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Just watched Body Heat for the first time in years. Loved the last few minutes. Now I've got a question for anyone who knows about bringing someone to justice.

What are the chances of catching "Matty" (Mary Ann Simpson)?

I know it's only a movie and that in Noir, the bad guy or girl wins, but I still have that question. Here's my thinking about collecting enough evidence to bring her to justice:

1. I've been told that is is difficult or impossible to follow the money trail if money is sent out of the US. So we can't learn where Matty send the money. Is that correct?

2. Do we have a chance to collect her finger prints or DNA? It didn't look like she was too careful with the former.

3. Most importantly, she was quite young in the film. Her yearbook was dated 1968. Let's assume that the murders took place in the year the film was made (1981). She would have graduated in 1968 at about 18 years of age. Then add another 13 years from 1968 to 1981. That means she would be about 31 when the murders took place. That also means that good investigators can probably find lots of her fellow students, teachers, friends and family for questioning back in Illinois. It's only been 13 years she was in high school and we know where she lived at that time.

Why question them? Because investigators learn a lot about criminals from talking to people that the criminal knew. Did she ever express her desire to go to any particular place? Remember that she added this to her photo in the yearbook as her desire: "to be rich and live in an exotic land". Maybe she always wanted to live on Kauai or Fiji and mentioned that to folks (before she formulated the murder plan much later).

4. Remember that Detective Oscar Grace met Ned Racine in prison to listen to his belief that "Matty" was still alive. And also remember that Det. Grace is a "law and order" guy who is dogged in pursuing the bad guy/gal. He doesn't give up. Seeing the yearbook would motivate Det. Grace and then a full blown investigation takes place, maybe including the FBI because of the money leaving the country.

Do you think that there is a good chance that they eventually get her? I do.

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  • 1 month later...

I love your thinking on this, ROYCOOK,  and I agree that there was a good chance they would eventually get her.  Unlike you,  I don't have any law enforcement instincts to back me up, just a feeling that there would be at least two people on the planet who would be ultra-motivated and unswerving in their desire to catch up with her and mete out justice.

Did you notice, in the film, that at least once, maybe twice (it's been a long time since I've seen it),  there would be random sightings of clowns in the middle of the action?   I'm thinking when Ned Racine was in Miami,  that there was a surrealistic glimpse of an incongruous clown in a vehicle, just going down the street.   I wondered if the director Kasdan meant anything by that, or if it indeed was just random.... 

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